Kelli Ward distances herself from Bannon and Arpaio

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Arizona Senate candidate Kelli Ward, a Republican, distanced herself Thursday from former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon and her primary opponent, controversial former Sheriff Joe Arpaio. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5/AP) Arizona Senate candidate Kelli Ward, a Republican, distanced herself Thursday from former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon and her primary opponent, controversial former Sheriff Joe Arpaio. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5/AP)

By Deena Zaru, CNN

(CNN) - Arizona Senate candidate Kelli Ward, a Republican, distanced herself Thursday from former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon and her primary opponent, controversial former Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

[RELATED: 2 Trump backers join Flake opponent Kelli Ward's campaign]

"I am distancing myself from Steve Bannon. He's made some significant mistakes, significant gaffes that are unacceptable to me. I support the President. I support the President's family," she told CNN's "New Day," referring to Bannon. 

The former Breitbart chief fell out of favor with the White House and many Republicans after he criticized members of President Donald Trump's family in Michael Wolff's book "Fire and Fury."

[MORE: Arizona Politics]

When asked about Arpaio's comments to CNN that former President Barack Obama's birth certificate is "phony," Ward said that Obama was "our legitimate President."

"I believe that Barack Obama was born here, that he was our legitimate President," Ward said.

[READ MORE: Senate candidate uses graphic photo in mailer]

Arpaio told CNN's Chris Cuomo on "Cuomo Prime Time" Wednesday night that there was "no doubt" that Obama's birth certificate was "phony."

[RELATED: Joe Arpaio: Obama's birth certificate is a 'phony document']

Arpaio announced Tuesday that he is running for the US Senate seat from Arizona currently occupied by Republican Sen. Jeff Flake, who is retiring from Congress at the end of his term.

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